A tale so impossible to believe. But you must.
Because it is all true. I will tell it to you.

I pulled into Tweetie, Arizona at 2 o’clock p:m. Now let me just tell you about Tweetie, Arizona. And 2 o’clock p:m. It is a factory town. They make thermoses and today I was to stop at a THERMOS FACTORY and tell THERMOS WORKERS a nice afternoon story of a lunatic nature. It’s nice to take off for a little while at work and listen to a mandolin player play his mandolin and tell you a story. Thermos workers are good, honorable people. They have morals and fortitude. I value them in society. I have always admired them in their quest to keep beverages hot or cold. I can’t imagine this would get boring, just these 2 choices, and after 20 years on the job you can feel a sense of fulfillment. I once knew of a thermos worker who went berserk and shot up a workplace but that is an isolated case. ROY!! (I am sorry. But I have a disease where I yell out men’s names. It is a form of Tourettes Syndrome but instead of yelling out obscenities, I bark out men’s names. I try and control myself but I am a sufferer currently on Canadian Internet drugs.)

I drove around Tweetie looking for the factory. Then I saw the big neon sign: It was of a large thermos with coffee steam coming out of the top and a BIG MAN IN PANTIES standing over it. That’s all the big 350 pound man had on was ladies red frilly panties. Underneath him the words blinked in neon: I WEAR BIG MANS PANTIES.

Now working on thermoses can be a grueling job making the round cylinder containers and putting a top on them so others can have hot or cold beverages. I once dated a Filipino women who had come from a long line of thermos workers and her family was always taking the tops off of containers and sniffing in there to see if it was hot or cold. Finally I left her. The last I heard she grew a pencil thin mustache and was a DMV instructor with an uneven haircut. Who knows what life brings? LARRY! (Her father torched a thermos factory. But that is an isolated case.)

I drove my car into the parking lot. I drive a Buick Ravioli which is Buick's fun new economy car. I only drive Buicks and have told them so repeatedly. I headed inside the factory after depositing my gum in a discarded thermos in the trash bin. It looked like it had been kicked repeatedly. The workers were all assembled. There were many of them. 20. I introduced myself and did not engage in small talk. Instead I started my story immediately with these words: The homeless bum that did not have good hair. There was many "oohs" and "ahhs." But not from this group. It was 2 o’clock. Prime afternoon lunatic story time.

Now look around at all the homeless men you see, I told them. They all have a full head of Nick Nolte hair. Take a look the next time you see a homeless man by the freeway with a sign saying he will do something that he never does. His hair is full and luxurious like Brad Pitt. Or look at a homeless man when he jumps out and squeegees your car window. He has a beautiful cascading head of hair like Johnny Depp. Have you ever seen a bald homeless man or one with thinning hair? No. Why is that?

The thermos audience nodded in approval. One man drank from his thermos. Which I thought was both unusual and nice. I belched up a fig and continued my story:

Now there was this one homeless man who had really bad hair. It was thin and falling out in clumps. In time there was just a little wisp of hair on the top of his head! Imagine that! A few pathetic strands away from being as bald as a cue ball! And the other homeless men shunned him. Why? Because they did not think he was really homeless. They thought he was an impostor! "How can a homeless man not have a full head of hair?" said one of the other homeless men.

"He must not be one of us. We are suspicious," another said.

A gasp went up from the thermos audience. They enjoyed this dramatic part of my story. I belched up a macaroon, yelled out the name OTTO, and continued: Well, this homeless man was not only shunned by society but by his homeless brothers as well. I believe his name was Gene Drench. Whenever Gene laid on a bench with a dirty newspaper on him the other homeless would walk by like he didn't exist. Whenever they passed a half eaten burger around they would not share with him. He was very depressed.

The thermos factory worker who had earlier drank from his thermos now had chocolate milk coming out of his nose. Someone yelled, "Bob’s got chocolate milk coming out of his nose again! Get away!" And we did as Bob’s eyes watered. Someone later told me Bob would gulp beverages down and it would pour from his nostrils. Only once with hot soup, did it really get bad when a clam chowder chunk got caught in his nose. I made a mental note to disregard this piece of information because I did not think a clam chowder chunk or Bob’s nostrils were pertinent to me. I was wrong.

The homeless man with bad hair tried everything. Rogaine, salves, ointments. Why he even took the change he made from squeegeeing windshields and had plugs put in the front of his head. But he just looked like a doll. The other homeless bums thought he may even be an undercover hobo! And then just when he was at his bleakest - he prayed for a miracle. "Will someone please send me some hair from the heavens above," he begged to the sky and looked up.

Now I was about fifteen minutes into my story when one of these ungrateful, lacking in any class, morally bankrupt thermos workers yelled out: "This story stinks! It’s bad! I’m going back to work."

And another thermos worker yelled back at him "Would you rather be making thermoses for another hour then listening to this guy tell us something we haven't heard? Even if it’s this stupid story about a homeless bum with thinning hair that is insulting to the homeless?"

The audience grumbled. There was yelling and pushing, some saying "Let him go on!" while others called me rude names. I believe one of them was stinkola. Now let me just tell you this -- I am an entertainer. I play the mandolin and squeezebox. But today I felt this was not the time for any mandolin playing. Instead - I introduced a ventriloquist act I sometimes travel with. This Ventriloquist had an act where he had a paralyzed puppet in a wheelchair who blamed the Ventriloquist for putting him there when a lighting fixture fell on him on stage. I said "Please welcome the Ventriloquist with the Paralyzed Puppet in a wheelchair!"

And out came a Ventriloquist with his paralyzed puppet in a wheelchair. "Well, hello Little Ricardo, don’t you seem happy this sunny morning," said the Ventriloquist to his paralyzed puppet.

Little Ricardo said - "You put me in this chair. My legs are dead. I curse your soul!! Get some circulation in my dead legs, you S.O.B.!"
The Ventriloquist said, "Now wait a second. These people came to see a happy show. You can’t talk like that."

"That’s all I can do is talk. You made me a quadriplegic. I can’t urinate on my own. I wear a bag. I just fouled myself. Clean it up, you dirty squat!"

"Now just a minute," the Ventriloquist said. "These are good people here. They make thermoses. They came to see a nice show. You can’t make them uncomfortable with your bladder problems. They don’t want to see a puppet with a wet spot on his pants."

"I soiled myself!" said Little Ricardo. Wash my skivvies out, you stinkola." Then Little Ricardo made a sound. BRAAACCKKK! Everyone in the audience knew what it was. They sniffed the air. Thermos workers were used to sniffing inside thermoses for hot or cold. They knew what a hot sniff was.

"Little Ricardo, did you make a noise? I smell something. You can’t do that. These people don't want to hear a paralyzed puppet make a squeench sound. That’s just wrong."

"I defecate on your bagel. I empty my bladder in your coffee. Lift my legs and itch under there," he said. "I’m helpless. You put me here when that lighting fixture fell on my head like it did on Curtis Mayfield."

The Ventriloquist itched under Little Ricardo’s legs and cared for him rolling him over and putting ointment on him, then changing his dirty underwear. This went on for 15 minutes in silence.

Then a thermos worker yelled: "Finish the homeless bum story! This puppet act is repulsive!"

And then another thermos factory worker yelled. "Would you rather listen to this man entertain us with SOMETHING!!! Or would you rather screw tops on to another cylinder all afternoon and check to see if it’s hot or cold in there?"

"Thank you," I said. And I continued with my story of the homeless bum that did not have good hair.

Well, this homeless bum looked up at the heavens and prayed for something to come from the sky. Just then a garbage truck rolled by and hit a bump. And out it flew. A wig fell off the back of the garbage truck and landed on the homeless man’s head. It was an Eva Gabor Stretch Wig. Now let me just tell you this: Eva Gabor Stretch Wigs are the finest stretch wigs out there. I once put one on my Chihuahua and she lived under it until she passed. I buried her in it. It was brown and curly. This wig fit perfectly on this homeless bums head. And this once homeless bum with the bad hair now had a full head of hair like Orlando Bloom. And all the other homeless bums gathered around and said "You’re one of us now. Let me share my chewed on sandwich with you and drink from my quarter filled bottle."

And that was the end of my act. I was exhausted. Drained. I had told them a story, SHOWED THEM my mandolin, and brought out a ventriloquist act. STEVE!! I nodded a nod of satisfaction to them as they drifted back to their work stations making thermoses for the rest of their lives. I thought of my Filipino girlfriend’s father and why he shot up a workplace after 20 years on the job. Maybe he was just a sick man. Maybe it had nothing to do with thermoses.

I was satisfied that I had performed my duties as an afternoon storyteller.

I got back in my car and headed off to another place and a new group and a new story.



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